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Hearing from couples who married abroad

by | 14 November 2015 | Stories

When I was growing up, everyone seemed to get married in England. The only people who got married abroad were rich and famous or just plain rich and they still couldn’t seem to keep away the crowds.

As travel becomes more accessible to the masses we’re seeing a huge increase of weddings heading overseas – after all, why get married in drizzly old England when some of the world’s most exciting wedding destinations are just a few hours flight away? Especially when you do the math – a wedding on domestic soil is likely to cost you an average of four times as much as one overseas, so the real question is why would anyone get married at home? Well, I’ve asked around a little and the results are, well, pretty obvious really.

Bride dancing on a beach

© pavel Chernobrivets –

The Cons


They say that blood is thicker than water, which I suppose is true, unless you’re on a beach in Mexico and you’ve had a few too many Piña Coladas.

For some people life is all about family. I interviewed my friend Elizabeth who is going to be getting married abroad in 2016 and it turns out she isn’t one of those people. In fact, she can be pretty scathing. Still, as we discussed the topic of family and weddings abroad, it turned out it was still a hard choice to make, but she believes that she’s made the right one. Here’s what she had to say:

‘I don’t get on with my Grandma, in fact, I’m fairly certain she hates me. The problem is, she loves my Dad, so when I told everyone that we were getting married in Cyprus, she kicked off because she was going to miss out on a family event.’

So, what’s the problem?

‘I really didn’t care what she thought, to be honest, but it did put pressure on my Dad, and as a result he started putting pressure on me. And I do care what my Dad thinks.

‘My fiancé John and I mulled it over and eventually changed our mind. We don’t want to upset anyone but at the same time we want to do what is right for us.’

Here’s the kicker.

‘So now we’re going to get married in Vegas, and we don’t expect many people to join us. But that’s what’s right for us. Putting distance between us and people that want to put themselves before our marriage.’

Good on them, I say.


I know a couple who got married in Thailand last year. And it was ridiculously cheap, saving them lots and lots of money so that they could afford to do things that they valued over a big party for hundreds of guests that they’d never get the chance to talk to on the wedding day.

The problem with that? It cost everyone else more. The friends and family that had to travel to get out there had to spend more than they usually would to get to a wedding. Rather than being treated to a free meal and a bit of a knees up on a cold Saturday Evening, they had to travel for 11 hours, hang around in Thailand for a couple of weeks and then get all sandy and hot watching the self-centred couple get married.

Oh, I should probably mention that I was the groom.

So, having a couple of weeks holiday in Thailand doesn’t sound that miserable, but if you’re quite close to the bride and groom it’s easy to feel as though you’re obligated to make the effort even if Thailand wasn’t on your list of places to go and you didn’t exactly have the money to spend.

Winter trees forming a heart

Winter trees forming a heart – 06photo/

The Pros

I’ve said it so many times now that I can’t even be bothered to repeat myself. So here’s a bunch of other people that I’ve spoken to that are willing to do just that in my stead :

‘We’re sure that every wedding day is magic, especially for the couple, but there is no way of making sure that it is magic like picking a magic destination. We got married in Lapland in early December and it was completely Christmas themed. A wedding abroad gives you and your partner something you both truly love and make it yours for a day.’ – Chrissie and Nick N.

‘There were six people at our wedding and we were two of them. At sunset we exchanged our vows and then we sat down with our parents for dinner. There is something to be said for sharing this moment with just your parents. It’s so intimate – they’ve witnessed the very moment you became an adult.’ – Zoe and Liam C.

‘When was the last time you saw a picture of it raining in August in the Canary Islands? Exactly.’ Hazel T and Helen L.

And finally –

Fae – ‘Has anyone ever given you a good reason not to get married abroad?’

Me – ‘Family.’

Fae – ‘Whose screwed up family doesn’t want their relatives to have an awesome wedding?’

Enough said, I think.

If anyone has any questions for our intrepid travellers, or if you intend on travelling abroad yourselves for a wedding, let us know in the comments section below – we’d love to know what you think the pros and cons are of getting married abroad.

Featured image – EpicStockMedia/

About the author

Paul Macklin

Paul is your friendly neighbourhood poet/cynic. He believes in story-telling, curiosity and peanut-butter sandwiches and he spends the vast majority of his time writing stuff. Paul learnt how to write stuff at Portsmouth University where he earned himself a Masters degree in writing stuff. Neat huh? Paul also hates writing in third person.


Stories Hearing from couples who married abroad